In all honesty, I’ve never been comfortable with the idea of chasing keywords. I consider this to be a pipe dream. But don’t put words in my mouth, keywords research and other keywords optimization pages are working pretty well if you know how to handle them.
The point is that search, in its broadest definition, has never been a question of keywords. But words only. There is a big difference between those 2 terms because these are the words we use to communicate with others, not keywords. We develop our vocabulary from birth to death for the sole purpose of being understood by the world around us, and that we understand that same world, those same people.
Thanks to the two natural components that are listening and talking, we are able to learn the meaning of words at an incredible speed and to enrich our language.
I suggest you to read this thread posted by David Amerland on LinkedIn. Our talk push the topic further.
Why am I telling you this ? Because language, words and their meaning are the foundation of what we all know as “search”.
I always say that from words come sentences, from sentences come contexts, from contexts come meaning.
Don’t search engine algorithms like keywords, why should we do otherwise?
Once again, search it’s all about how you treat words to create context and meaning. I won’t deny algorithms are fed by keywords and expressions that are frequently searched by Internet users.
But if we consider that the fundamental function of algorithms and search engines lies in dealing with and improving their understanding of our social behavior, no strategy or method for increasing your web visibility can be based on the notion of keywords alone.
Because in everyday life we do not communicate with keywords but with complete sentences that have a meaning and that together form a context that can be understood.
Chasing keywords will ruin your search strategy in a way that you will inevitably obscure the use of words, sometimes rare, used to contextualise a subject.
Yes this is it, do not chase keywords, chase context, chase subject
I would add that some keywords are difficult to rank on too because they cover numerous meanings so algorithms struggle to refine the context. Only the use of the right vocabulary can save this drifting boat.
For instance, how to be sure I am talking about Jaguar, the animal if I only put this word in my content ? To be understood, I need to create a context around it by adding words like “animal”, “jungle”, “predator”, “feline”, otherwise both humans and search engines would understand I am talking about the US football team from Jacksonville or about the UK luxury car.
This is one example among thousands of others that proves once again that we must act in a natural language to improve the search of websites. Just as we do in life.